The Secret to Living Longer That Your Doctor Might Not Tell You About

Doctors may not be prescribing it, but there’s a simple “medicine” that’s been proven to prolong life: exercise. Australian researchers are urging physicians to emphasize the importance of working out to older women. Studies show that moderate to vigorous exercise not only has physical health benefits, but it can improve mental health as well, particularly when combined with other positive changes in one’s life.

Forget the idea that 30 minutes of mild activity per day is enough. To truly improve health, older women should aim for 30-45 minutes of moderate to high-intensity exercise at least five times a week. This type of workout should leave you breathing heavily and breaking a sweat.

The Power of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

For those seeking the most effective way to boost their life expectancy, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) comes highly recommended. HIIT, which alternates between short bursts of intense exercise and longer periods of lighter activity, has been shown to provide maximum benefits in terms of health and fitness.

Of course, the key to getting these benefits is making sure the exercise is intense enough. As researcher Debra Anderson says, “It’s also important that the exercise be tailored to ensure that it is high-intensity enough to obtain the positive sustained effects of exercise.”

Find an Exercise Program That Works for You

What kinds of exercise should you be doing to get these life-prolonging effects? According to Anderson’s research, older women tend to enjoy jogging, running, hiking, swimming, and cycling. The great thing about these activities is that they can easily be incorporated into your daily routine and require little to no equipment.

In Anderson’s practice, doctors design home-based exercise programs that are tailored to the individual’s needs and easy to integrate into everyday activities. So, don’t wait for your doctor to prescribe exercise – take matters into your own hands and start incorporating physical activity into your life.

The Benefits of Exercise for Older Women

You might be wondering, why all the focus on exercise for older women? Here are a few reasons why it’s particularly important for this group to stay active:

  1. Improved cardiovascular health: Regular exercise can help lower your risk of heart disease and stroke, which are among the leading causes of death for women.
  2. Stronger bones: As you age, you lose bone density, making it more important than ever to engage in weight-bearing exercises that can help maintain bone health and prevent osteoporosis.
  3. Better balance and mobility: Staying active helps improve your strength and flexibility, reducing the risk of falls and maintaining your independence.
  4. Mental health benefits: Exercise has been shown to improve mood and decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety, which are especially important as you age and face the various challenges that come with it.
  5. Reduced risk of chronic diseases: Regular exercise can help lower your risk of developing chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, and obesity.

While doctors may not always think to remind you of the importance of exercise, you can take control of your own health and prioritize physical activity in your life. By engaging in moderate to high-intensity exercise at least five times a week, you can enjoy the countless physical and mental health benefits that come with staying active – and potentially add years to your life.